Longer online version; see re-sub-edited PDF

Eat yet of old fruit until the ninth year1

IN THE LATEST issue of a long-established British monthly magazine there appears an interview I did with an American music mogul. I did it in 2013. The subject died in 2014. The editor who commissioned it retired in 2018 - promising me that this interview and one other feature would run in the his successor's first issues, as he had "marked" them out.

Half his promise was true. The other feature did run in the next issue. Sadly, that editor died in 2021.

And now my 2013 interview is in the March 2022 issue. It's taken almost a decade to get published. This is definitely the longest I've ever waited to see a feature published (rather than having it spiked and then demanding a kill fee...)

Why the wait? The editor never gave a reason. He liked the feature - but there was no advertising campaign to accompany it, and as the magazine's core readership had more mainstream tastes I guess he felt he'd save it for a rainy day. Every six months or so I would nudge the new editor via email and he would say "I want to use it but..."

Well, he finally did. I was lucky that the interviewee's estate provided great images after I was informed that there was "no budget for photos"

I was asked to edit it down from the original 5000 words to 3000 - so I lost on that.

But I'm still happy it's in print. And I think it demonstrates that being patient and polite can pay off in the long run.

Has anyone out there waited longer than nine years to get paid for an assignment? Do you have any experiences worth sharing on how to get paid for work that's not been used?

1 Leviticus 25;22